Top | The Food of France

Pork Noisettes with Prunes

(recipe, Maria Villegas & Sarah Randell)

Introduction

Pork with prunes is a typical dish of the orchard-rich Touraine region. It is sometimes said that the French generally do not combine fruit with meat, sweet flavors with savory, but prunes and apples are both enthusiastically combined with pork.

Ingredients

  1. 8 pork noisettes (medallions), or 2 pork fillets (13 ounces each)
  2. 16 prunes, pitted
  3. 1 Tbsp. oil
  4. 3 Tbsp. butter
  5. 1 onion, finely chopped
  6. ½ cup white wine
  7. 1¼ cups chicken or brown stock
  8. 1 bay leaf
  9. 2 thyme sprigs
  10. 1 cup heavy cream

Steps

  1. Trim any excess fat from the pork, making sure you get rid of any membrane that will cause the pork to shrink. If you are using pork fillets, cut each fillet into four diagonal slices.
  2. Put the prunes in a small saucepan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain well.
  3. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed frying pan and add half the butter. When the butter starts foaming, add the pork, in batches if necessary, and sauté on both sides until cooked. Transfer the pork to a warm plate, cover, and keep warm.
  4. Pour off the excess fat from the frying pan. Melt the remaining butter, add the onion, and cook over low heat until softened but not browned. Add the wine, bring to a boil, and simmer for 2 minutes. Add the stock, bay leaf, and thyme, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until reduced by half.
  5. Strain the stock into a bowl and rinse the frying pan. Return the stock to the frying pan, add the cream and prunes, and simmer for 8 minutes, or until the sauce thickens slightly. Put the pork back into the pan and simmer until heated through.